Friday, October 24, 2014

desperate days went




"And one more thing..." (Steve Jobs)


Finally broke down and bought a copy of Consumer Reports, not a bad idea with all the appliances in my future, however I already disagree with a few of their hot recommendations!  I could join by the month for an online access so did that, not have to remember to quit after I check on every imaginable thing I can think of!  
Whatcha think?  Over the top?  Too much?  Never for resale?  I know, I know, and don't forget I am not usually a fan of purple but this knocks me over!   All morning as I was getting ready for some old friends coming to dinner tonight I was thinking that I wonder how the purple stove will feel...  Stop me!
OR I can get one that matches my car!  The mind boggles.

Tomorrow AM I have to be in the studio waiting for Comcast and fortunately also the fire inspector-  I have to get there early to move the bookcases in front of the electrical box that he yelled at me for last time.  Fortunately they are on wheels, but he makes threats like the firemen will have to just knock this bookcase over to get to the electric box!  I say, well, that's dumb since it's on wheels and they could easily move it.  he says nope, they are in a hurry to put out the fire in the box so they will just knock it over.  Huh?  Then they will have to CLIMB over it all, with all the junk on the floor.  He insists it has to be clear to get to the box, I agree and put the shelf back when he leaves because that's the corner where the spiders live and it's all I can do to occasionally grab my vacuum!  No way is it gonna be 'clear'.

Now it's tomorrow from yesterday-  sorry I missed a day, but with people over for dinner and that mess to clean up, then my 7:30 departure for the studio this morning, there just wasn't time.  So here's how the day went-
Fire inspector due in the AM too, so I moved the bookcase out of place to free up access to the electric panel.  (He yelled at me last visit.)  Made sure the fire extinguisher was out and reachable.

Cleaned the toilet.

Kicked the computer because there was no radio!  Still no internet, and the guy was supposed to be there between 8-10.  By 11 he was a no-show so I called Comcat to sweat at them but got Rich and he was very calming to my raw nerve.

Worked a bit on a blouse to wear to a 'Coastal' theme party in a few weeks.  Naturally I picked the New England coast.  And no, it's not a costume party but I have wanted to make an outfit to eat lobster since I saw Marcia Gay Harden wear a jeweled lobster dress in the Pollock movie.  no jewels here, just lobsters cut off a dishcloth and appliqued onto a damask tablecloth with some mussels and some littlenecks.  

Worked a bit on the ATCs due in December, hard to make them all different without having distinct favorites-  decided to make them all red, maybe some sewing soon on these.

Made coffee, drank it.  Made chia tea and drank it.  

Ate lunch, beef jerky and a few grapes, no carbs, yea.

Took stuff out of baskets and put it all into shoe boxes by category.  Gels, extenders, gesso, digital grounds. and even some fabric paint.

Grabbed six baskets and painted them all silver out in the driveway, away from the building.  I used 2 full cans of paint and have a few more baskets to go.  The last can wasn't the same color silver, more dull graThese are shiny like aluminum!  Saw some silver baskets a few weeks ago in TJ's painted silver soFire inspector due in the AM too, so I moved the bookcase out of place to free up access to the electric panel.  (He yelled at me last visit.)  Made sure the fire extinguisher was out and reachable.

Cleaned the toilet.

Kicked the computer because there was no radio!  Still no internet, and the guy was supposed to be there between 8-10.  By 11 he was a no-show so I called Comcat to sweat at them but got Rich and he was very calming to my raw nerve.

Worked a bit on a blouse to wear to a 'Coastal' theme party in a few weeks.  Naturally I picked the New England coast.  And no, it's not a costume party but I have wanted to make an outfit to eat lobster since I saw Marcia Gay Harden wear a jeweled lobster dress in the Pollock movie.  no jewels here, just lobsters cut off a dishcloth and appliqued onto a damask tablecloth with some mussels and some littlenecks.  

Worked a bit on the ATCs due in December, hard to make them all different without having distinct favorites-  decided to make them all red, maybe some sewing soon on these.

Made coffee, drank it.  Made chia tea and drank it.  

Ate lunch, beef jerky and a few grapes, no carbs, yea.

Took stuff out of baskets and put it all into shoe boxes by category.  Gels, extenders, gesso, digital grounds. and even some fabric paint.

Grabbed six baskets and painted them all silver out in the driveway, away from the building.  I used 2 full cans of paint and have a few more baskets to go.  The last can wasn't the same color silver, more dull gray.  These are shiny like aluminum!  Saw some silver baskets a few weeks ago in TJ's and decided to 'upgrade' old studio baskets with paint I already had.  Two coats, took a long time because it was very windy

Rearranged and cleaned out the stretched canvas shelves and the encaustic board shelves, took down the towering mess of boxes that had found their way to the top of the shelves and kept falling off.

And finally I spent a little time admiring my new side table I found on sale yesterday after I got my hairs cut.  This might go next to my new bathtub.

Speaking of that project, HERE'S MY NEW DRIVEWAY!  Yeah, we have to work around the stupid electrical box.  They scraped the ground yesterday and today they brought in tons of gravel.  Actually it's just a pad to go under a driveway but a place to stick the dumpster meanwhile.  It's really happening!  There actually WILL be a bathtub with a cute horse hoof stool.  This afternoon TY and I drove down to pick out the flooring and we're in sticker shock. Actually we picked out a beautiful wood with enough variation to not be boring, the dark stain I wanted, the texture TY wanted.  But we haven't signed in stone- still need a few more investigative trips.

I guess I left you hanging about my internet-  I called the guy at 10 and he was on an 'install', he showed up at 11:30 and fiddled and fiddled to install the new modem.  Unfortunately in this operation he knocked out my router so I now have to go buy a new one and install that myself.  Possibly he knocked out my router and I need a new modem?  Oh, whatevah, I'm on it and will go find one as soon as I get my shine silver paint tomorrow.  I sure hope you don't think I'm gonna show you art now, eh?  Oh rats, how about one:





In ‘Postcards From Google Earth’, Brooklyn-based artist Clement Valla collects images of distorted bridges found on the virtual map. The bridges are shown dipping into the rivers, canyons, and roads they supposedly cross over.
Though most of us might attribute these funny scenes to a glitch in the system, Valla says the program is just doing what it’s told to do, that is to show us the depth and edges of places.


OK, how about this one-  will you go strip your Japanese maple to fry it up tempura style? 


The Japanese love their autumns so much they’ve found a way to eat them – in the form of maple leaves fried tempura style. The snack is considered to be a must-try delicacy for visitors to Osaka, where it is fried in sizzling vegetable oil with lightly sweetened maple batter. The recipe gets even more demanding in the city of Minoh in North Osaka, where the leaves are preserved for an entire year in salt barrels before they are cooked and served.


Ossian Brown's photo of Halloween kids  Remember when we actually MADE our costumes?
Please excuse me from a squirrel picture today, Halloween takes precedence these days.


Wednesday, October 22, 2014

classmates aware assimilable




  Lao Tzu– “At the center of your being you have the answer; 
you know who you are and you know what you want.”


Yesterday in driving rain, I got myself up to my pod meeting, the second one I've attended.  I am not thinking this is for me-  they are doing little cooperative projects, ATCs due in December-  I'll take part and try it again, but I don't need hand holding, I need some good kicks in the pants and someone to be responsible to for getting there to do my part.  I want serious crit, I need straight talk, I need feedback, and I don't need to be the one who knows it all.  And also I want to meet like minded souls but these nice women are mostly beginners and still taking classes trying to find their voices.  In short, it's appearing just like a guild with the block-of-the-month projects, assignments I neither have the inclination nor the time to do this kind of stuff.  And a guilt trip if you don't 'participate'.  I want my old crit group!
(Here's to keeping the Crazy on the INSIDE)

Anyway, it was a deluge of rain when I left and it was slow going down Route 1 to home-  I found out this morning that we had 9 (NINE!) inches of rain yesterday.  No wonder I got a hot foot running to the car!

Today I had to be at the studio to wait for Comcast because Sandy Got No Internets there for a week or more.  My appointment was from 1 to 5 so I was there at noon working and waiting.  No internet guy by 4:30 so I called back to the Mother Ship and they told me he was here at 1:11.  Bullshit, I was there the whole time, lights on and door not locked.  And I don't even have a radio so no way did I miss him at the door.  The Home Ship had the right address and my phone number-  why didn't the Guy?  So they rescheduled for Friday because *I* missed the appointment!  I was spitting' all the way home, because they say he will be there at 8 sharp.  Means I have to get there at 7:30 and probably sit outside on my car watching for him.  (Truth be told, there are 5 buildings in my Industrial Park.  Each one of them has a different street address, but all 5 have offices numbered from 100 to 1200.  I think he probably went to the wrong building. 
Bless His Heart.
and I mean that only in the Southern way.


But I have a treat in store, Bunnies!  Wait till you see these 'taxidermy' animals!




  Lucky are those that own a piece of sculpture by Frédérique Morrel. Her one of kind tapestry covered animals, skulls, and furniture pieces and are highly sought after. I discovered her work in the latest issue of Hi Fructose magazine, where you can read about Morrel and her enchanting fanciful beasts. 
Morrel and her husband creatively take fiberglass taxidermy molds which are later injected with expanding foam, to covering the form. She begins each work with fiberglass molds injected with expanding foam and then reinforces them with steel rods. Then the vintage tapestries are applied by hand to the form.

They then cover these forms with vintage tapestries and embroideries she collects. They use tapestries to convey a narrative through the use of tradition, erotic  and kitschy pieces they find in flea markets and antique shows. Morrel also uses real antlers, teeth, feathers and fur. She makes a point to reiterate she uses all found materials; no animals are hurt for these creations. 









 If there is, indeed, nothing lovelier than a tree, Connecticut-based artist Bryan Nash Gill shows us why. Creating large-scale relief prints from the cross sections of trees, the artist reveals the sublime power locked inside their arboreal rings. Gill creates patterns not only of great beauty but also year-by-year records of the life and times of fallen or damaged logs. He rescues the wood from the property surrounding his studio and neighboring land, extracts and prepares blocks of various species (including ash, maple, oak, spruce, and willow), then makes prints by carefully following and pressing the contours of rings and ridges until the intricate designs transfer from tree to paper. The results are colored, nuanced shapes—mesmerizing impressions of the structural integrity hidden inside each tree.Bryan Nash Gill - About Bryan



Finally!  I found my new 'Twins' quilt in the series.  Trouble is it kind of looks like the bottom squirrel is wearing the pelt of the upper squirrel as a headdress.  Hmmm.  Maybe I could make him a little tapestry pelt like Frederique above.  I'd have to use 
petit point
eh? 

Oh sometimes I kill myself.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

FOR THE BLOG HOP

hophophop hophophophop hophophophophop hophophop hophop hop

                 Whoa, that sure puts me in a hoppin' mood!  Gotta love this bunn!

I have been asked to be part of the Around the World Blog Hop by Lee Anna Paylor, creator of the blog NOT AFRAID OF COLOR.  And believe me, she isn't.  The idea is to have a never ending blog hop all over the world.  So, here is South Florida chiming in!  I really enjoyed Lee Anna's blog because she also talks about her life experiences and things that make her happy as well as annoyances.  Her life experiences turn into blog fodder, so much fun to find myself nodding my head in agreement!  I have never been a fan of deadly serious art blogs talking about professionalism and the business of art.  This is all stuff each person has to find out for themselves because everybody has different life plans, different energy, and different self-esteem!  Some of the biggest blow-hards manage to produce the worst art.  You'll have a good time over there with Lee Anna!


1. What am I working on?

Right now I am trying to clear the decks in my house because we are trying to sell it-  all the 'chowder' has arrived in my studio which means I've had to move stuff around to make room.  My husband just now brought over another pick-up truck full right after I snapped this mess.  I know the disco ball isn't going to make it...  I'm very lucky to have the space to move junk to while the house is on the market to fool then lookers that I live a neat and tidy life-  wish I could leave the dogs here too!  It all makes accessing things in my shelves a bit difficult.

what a mess

But that isn't what the question asked, so here is a little detail of what I'm wrestling with now- Kantha stitching:
This is taking way too long, don't know why I started it other than I had made a woven landscape piece I was pretty unhappy with.  Stay tuned to see if I can pull it out of it's hole!  The IDEA is that I am trying to modify colors and soften edges with the stitching.  What is happening in REAL LIFE is that I'm in over my head and tolerance levels, 
and kinda bored with this whole thing, especially threading that thick thread through a tiny needle over and over and over.  Frankly this was started as a sort of 'placeholder' to work on while the rest of my life was upside down.  Trouble is that things are getting right side up again and I have this self imposed rule that I have to finish a thing before I start a New Thing.  'Finishing' on this might simply be me declaring,
"ENOUGH SANDY, LET''S MOVE IT ONWARD!"  (and folding it up)


2. How does my work differ from others in its genre?

I don't think anything I do resembles anything else in any genre  (three 'anys' in one sentence!)  Basically I don't repeat pieces, prefer to explore and try new things with every piece.  If you go up to the '
QUILTISH' tab in the menu bar you can check a few of the more recent pieces I've finished.  Some things do repeat, like my complete obsession of twins, but each twin piece is different, different techniques, different materials even though all come from vintage photographs I find and use my unending stash of vintage fabrics.  All my textile work is basically collage.  So's my encaustic work, and also the books.


3. Why do I create what I do?

I only do what I want to do any more, never play to a show theme-  if I have something that fits I send it along.  I'm in the end part of 40+ years doing work with fabric so making stuff is just an ingrained part of my life.  I simply can't NOT do it.  I can't stand to do blocks in a piece, I am bored at the second one!  My side passion is artists' books.  It transitions nicely from my collaged fabric and collaged and encaustic papers, plus I can actually print the story alongside my work!  I've taken a couple of basic classes to learn the forms but now, like quilting, I prefer to explore and re-invent the wheel again and again!  Now go to the 'Collages, Encaustics, Artists Books' page up there in the menu bar.
4. How does my creative process work?

I'll talk about the process for the 'Twins' series here-  first I find a compelling photograph-  usually it very tiny because snapshots from the early part of the century weren't big.  I actually like that I can't see details because it allows me freedom to make changes, modify, add or leave out details.  For instance, the two middle aged women dressed in bathing suits and Cuban heels was taken in front of a garage door-  I felt they needed to be on a beach so I added that to the full sized drawing I make as a template.  If I need to make a pattern for a part of it, say the shape of a bathing suit, I trace it off onto tracing paper and use that as my pattern-  I don't make patterns for the whole piece.  I wing it.  Then I do the background first and sew it to a backing fabric before I add the women.  Sometimes I appliqué by hand, sometimes I raw edge machine stitch, and sometimes I just fuse pieces down.  OK, I admit sometimes I glue too.  I don't see the 'Twins' as finished, there are 6 now in the series and I don't currently have a compelling photograph to work from-  but I know one will appear when I'm ready to start something new.  Maybe boy twins next.  



The final cool part of the blog hop is to pick two other quilters-

and of course I can't do that-  so instead I have picked FIVE OTHER ARTISTS, all of them somewhat connected to quilting, but like me, off on their own 'thing'.  

I want you to go visit Terry Grant over at And Sew it Goes.  Terry is an amazing graphic designer who just returned from a fabulous trip to Spain, so her blog is full of her photography.  I've been watching her for a long time and I can guarantee these photographs are going to reappear as her meticulous quilts.  She overdyes commercial fabrics to be used in her work. Terry draws digitally every day and it's fun to see that work develop too.
 
Next, I want to refer you to Ragged Cloth Cafe, a blog written by a group of quilters about art in all varieties.  This has been around for a long time, with contributors cycling in and out and back again so viewpoints and information is always changing and interesting.  For instance, the current article by Olga Norris is about endpapers in books, fascinating! 
To see some embroidery work by Susan Lenz, try her main blog or go poke around at one of her other blogs like THIS-  I just realized that all my suggestions are for artists who work with discarded and recycled fabrics, and Susan is no exception-  I guess that's what initially attracted me to her gigantic tablecloth installation and her massive thread collection hanging in baskets from the ceiling!  Be prepared to spend lots of time here.  There is a great process series on that second link I sent. 
One more MUST SEE, is Teddy Pruett's blog.  Teddy also uses 'found' materials to make her story quilts and when you study them for a few minutes your sides will split from the humor included.  Teddy is also a certified quilt appraiser so she has a very scholarly side she saves for that work.  
And finally, for a completely different take on quilting arts, you must see Deb Lacativa's blog, More Whiffs, Glimmers, and Left Oeuvres.  Deb dyes and discharges fabric she finds and uses her pieces to build up layers and layers of fabrics as you would add paint to an abstract painting.  Her work is nonobjective, but it always has meanings and secrets she works in to surprise.  She sells both her dyed fabric and her completed works off her site.
                                                  Tell 'em all I sent you! 

now I have to go find a squirrel for tomorrow's post...